So, with all the weight I have lost, I needed some new underthings. But I had no idea what size bra I am any more, so I needed to get fitted. For Christmas, someone gave me a gift card to Victoria’s Secret, so I made time to go there.
But you know, it’s their busy season. They had two girls working, and like fifteen people in line waiting to pay (made me think recession shmacession, but then sex always sells, right?) so I kind of tried blindly to find a bra that would fit to no avail. I had been a 4_ D+, so I was trying
3_ C’s and 3_ C’s, and in every case, the cups would runneth over.
What I really needed was some help. Ideally, this help would come from someone who knew what she was doing though, some woman on the west end of middle age who was wearing both a tape measure and a pair of glasses around her neck. I don’t know what Victoria’s Secret is like in your neck of the woods, but the one at my sad little mall (the one that’s one bad holiday season away from having a wig store?) is sparsely populated with college-age girls who look as though they may have barely passed their G.E.D. for all their looking at their own reflections in any window or surface that might do the reflecting.
Besides, I have this theory about Victoria’s Secret: They’re not all that. They are fast food for underwear, like the McDonald’s of Underwear (Manfrengen says, “So, they’re like McBra-nalds?”) but no one says they’re the McDonald’s of Underwear because what they see is Stephanie Seymour, Heidi Klum or Naomi Campbell in a lacy bra and panties and people (specifically men and the women who aspire to be such fantasies) are just like “ooh, SPEC-TAC-ULAR!” but really it’s just eye candy…junk food.
Seriously. I blame Victoria’s Secret for the unnecessary pervasiveness of the thong, which let’s face it, is a kindness to call at the very least misogynistic. All you have to do is add Victoria’s Secret to the mindlessness (that masquerades as female empowerment) that is Sex and the City, and what you will get is a lot of sheep who believe they need sheering in a Brazilian style.
So I left Victoria’s Secret in search of that lady with the tape measure and her glasses on a chain. I went to this store in a little shopping center that my stepmom had recommended, and sure enough, the ladies there were at the ready with the tape measures.
So, I got measured, and I actually learned something new: that while your measurement goes down, your cup size actually goes up. So even though I have gone from 4_ to 3_, I’m still in the D territory. The woman got me all fitted with a nice comfortable every-day bra, and then I said, you know, how ’bout something with a little more va-voom? Something that could lift me to the heights I was in the 1980’s? Sure enough, she pulled out this sexy number with black tulle and a little tuxedo thing going on between the underwire. It had a little row of roses going up the middle. (Just an aside: who designs underwear? How about that for a career?) Any way, yes, it fit nicely. Not only did I look like something out of the 1980’s, I looked and felt like Madonna circa 1987.
It was very nice indeed, so I told the woman I would take it. Then she asked if I would like to see the matching panties, and I thought what the hell? I’ll go for broke. Let me tell you: I have always been a strictly Jockey girl. I have never owned a matching set of bra and panties. It’s just never been important to me to have such a thing, and I have never suffered either sexually or self-esteem-wise because of it. Just never got around to it. Its not that I don’t buy into sexy. I like sexy and to feel sexy, it’s just personally I’m more like the sexy librarian than the kind of girl who looks like she should be working on a pole. But okay, today I had decided to go for broke. Today I would get the panties that matched this fabulous bra. What the hell.
Then she brought the panties. She said they were panties, but I wasn’t so sure. In the front, yes they had that kind of tuxedo thing going on around I guess you could say where the band of the panties should go; they were kind of that hipster-style brief, but everything else, including the crotch, was tulle. Black tulle. There was no elastic in the back or anything, it was just tulle, and I could picture my cheeks basically swinging in the breeze that this flowing fabric would fan. But I’m a gamer, I figured I would check it out, and I did, but it didn’t feel right. It wasn’t me.
Then I looked at the price tag: FIFTY-FOUR DOLLARS. For panties! That had very little fabric! Fifty-four dollars…I don’t even know that I have ever paid that much for a whole pair of pants. I probably have, but I am sure I felt like I better get my money’s worth out of them.
So then I thought, crap, I already said I was taking the bra, let me check the price tag here. Va-Voom! I don’t want to tell you the exact price, but let me just say that those beans could buy a lot of Jockeys. But you know, Jockey’s not that sexy, so I went with it. I’ll wear it for those special special occasions, and when I do, even though I probably won’t be able to breath as freely, and the lace on the straps are likely as not to give me a rash, I will feel like a million bucks. At least for the evening.